Satisfactory Academic Progress

To be eligible for Federal Student Aid funds, a student must make satisfactory academic progress. The Department of Education considers satisfactory academic progress as meeting both the qualitative and quantitative criteria ex­plained in this section.  In addition, a student may not receive Federal Student Aid for a program where the student has attempted 150% of the credits required for graduation from that program (Maximum Time Frame).

Satisfactory Academic Progress is is monitored at the end of each term. Students should review their SAP status by logging onto LoLA and clicking on the Financial Aid tab, then Financial Aid Status to review their Academic Progress. It is the responsibility of the student to check his or her satisfactory academic progress at the end of each term. The school does not notify students separate from LoLA when SAP requirements have not been met, and will not disburse Federal Student Aid for terms subsequent to a term for which SAP was not met.

Qualitative Progress

Students must maintain a minimum cumulative Grade Point Average of 2.0 in their current program.  Cumulative means the combined GPA for all terms attended. If a student’s Cumulative GPA drops below 2.0 at the end of any one term, he or she will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for the next term. Although he or she will still receive Federal Student Aid during that term, if he or she fails to bring his or her cumulative GPA for that program back to the minimum 2.0 by the end of that term, he or she will be placed on Financial Aid Suspension and will not be eligible for Federal Student Aid for the following term.

Quantitative Progress (Rate of Progression)

Students must complete a minimum of 67% of all credit hours attempted/started in their program. Students may determine whether or not they are meeting Rate of Progression by dividing the total number of credit hours successfully completed by the total number of credit hours attempted/ started. For example, a student who starts a term with 12 credit hours and then drops one three-credit class during the term will have completed 75% of the credit hours for that term: 9 remaining credits divided by 12 attempted credits = 75%. However, a student who drops two three-credit classes during the term will have completed only 50% of the credit hours for that term: 6 remaining credits divided by 12 attempted credits = 50%. Students who drop below a cumulative 67% completion rate for all terms will be placed on Financial Aid Warning for the next term.  Although he or she will still receive Federal Student Aid during that term, if he or she fails to bring his or her cumulative rate of completion back to 67% by the end of that term, he or she will be placed on Financial Aid suspension and will not be eligible for Federal Student Aid for the following term.

GPA and Rate of Progression are affected by course incompletes, withdrawals, repetitions, and transfer credits.  All courses attempted in a program, whether completed or not, count toward the Maximum Timeframe requirement (see below).

Course Incompletes

An “I” (Incomplete) grade is worth 0 points toward your GPA numerator, but the course is still counted in the denominator. For example, Mary takes four courses during the term. She receives a passing grade of a C in three courses, but an Incomplete in the fourth. To calculate her GPA, Mary will take the numeric value of a C (2.0) for each completed course (total of 6 points) plus 0 for the Incomplete and divide this total by the number of courses attempted: 6 points divided by 4 courses = 1.5. Mary thus has a 1.5 GPA at the end of this term.

Students who receive an “I” at the end of the term will have a period in which they may turn in all missing assignments and receive a grade. Failure to turn in the assignments in accordance with the “I” contract will result in an F grade for that class, which also carries 0 points.

Withdrawals

A “W” (Withdrawal) grade is worth 0 points toward your GPA numerator, but the course is still counted in the denominator. For example, Bill takes four courses during the term. He receives a passing grade of a C in three courses, but withdrawals from the fourth. To calculate his GPA, Bill will take the numeric value of a C (2.0) for each completed course (total of 6 points) plus 0 for the Withdrawn course and divide this total by the number of courses attempted/started: 6 points divided by 4 courses = 1.5. Bill thus has a 1.5 GPA at the end of this term.

Transfer Credits

All credits transferred from any other school which apply to a student’s program are counted as both attempted and completed. These credits will be applied to the student’s GPA, Rate of Progression, and Maximum Time Frame calculations. It does not matter whether a student received Federal Student Aid for those transfer credits or not, all transferred, program-related credits will be applied toward Satisfactory Academic Progress. Transfer credits are typically evaluated during, and applied to a student’s GPA and Rate of Progression at the end of the first term with SLCC.

Maximum Time Frame

A student is no longer eligible to receive Federal Student Aid once he or she has attempted 150% of the number of credits required to complete his or her degree program. For example, if a program requires 60 credits to graduate, the student may receive Federal Student Aid for up to 90 credits. However, once the student has attempted 90 credits, he or she loses eligibility for Federal Student Aid. There is no appeal process for the Maximum Time Frame requirement.

Financial Aid Warning

For the first term in which a student fails to meet one or more of the Satisfactory Academic Progress requirements, the student will be automatically placed on Financial Aid Warning for the subsequent term. The student is still eligible for Federal Student Aid during a term in which he or she is placed on Warning.

Financial Aid Suspension

If a student fails to bring his or her GPA or Rate of Progression in line with the minimum standards by the end of a term during which he or she was on Financial Aid Warning, that student is placed on Financial Aid Suspension and is not eligible for Federal Student Aid until he or she has improved his or her GPA and Rate of Progression to the minimum standard, at which time Federal Student Aid eligibility will be re-established.

Financial Aid Probation

When a student is placed on Suspension and loses Federal Student Aid eligibility because he or she failed to make satisfactory progress, he or she may appeal (appeal form found here) that result on the basis of: an injury or illness, the death of a relative, or other special circumstances. His or her appeal must explain why he or she failed to make satisfactory progress and what has changed in his or her situation that will allow him or her to make satisfactory progress during the next term.

If SLCC determines, based on the appeal, that the student should be able to meet SAP standards by the end of the subsequent payment period, SLCC may place him or her on probation without an academic plan. SLCC will review the student’s progress at the end of that one payment period, as probation status is for one payment period only. If SLCC determines, based on the appeal, that the student will require more than one payment period to meet progress standards, that student may be placed on probation with an academic plan.  SLCC will review the student’s progress at the end of one pay­ment period as is required of a student on probation status, to determine if the student is meeting the requirements of the academic plan. If the student is meeting the requirements of the academic plan, the student is eligible to re­ceive Title IV aid as long as the student continues to meet those requirements and is reviewed according to the requirements specified in the plan.

Reestablishing Aid Eligibility

Once a student has raised his or her cumulative GPA to a minimum of 2.0, or has completed at least 67% of all of the courses he or she has attempted in his or her program, and has not attempted 150% of the credits required for that program’s degree, the student will be considered as meeting the eligibility requirements to receive Federal Student Aid for the next term.

Program Changes/Change of Concentration

Because SAP is calculated based on a student’s current program, if a student changes programs, Satisfactory Academic Progress for financial aid purposes will include a review of only those courses that pertain to the new program for each term a student is in that program. For example, if a student is enrolled in Program A for Fall term, and at the start of the Spring term changes to Program B, at the end of Spring Term SAP will be based on all Program B courses, and any courses from Program A that apply to Program B. In the specific case of the Business Office Technology program, if a student changes concentrations, all courses taken that apply to all concentrations will be included in the SAP review, but only those taken for a specific concentration will be included in the review at the end of each term for which that concentration is declared.